The ultimate rule (in writing) is: Learn so far as possible to be intelligible and transparent—no notice taken of your style, but solely of what you express by it.— Thomas Carlyle
The Meaning of the Quote
The quote, “The ultimate rule (in writing) is: Learn so far as possible to be intelligible and transparent—no notice taken of your style, but solely of what you express by it,” emphasizes the importance of clarity and transparency in writing. It suggests that the primary goal of writing should be to effectively convey ideas and meaning to the reader, rather than focusing on personal style or manner of expression.
According to this quote, the writer should strive to make their writing easily understandable and transparent, ensuring that readers can comprehend the intended message without being distracted or confused by the author’s particular writing style. The emphasis is on the content and substance of what is being expressed rather than the literary techniques or flourishes employed.
This quote promotes the idea that effective writing should prioritize communication and the conveyance of ideas over any personal or stylistic preferences. The goal is to make the message clear and accessible to the reader, allowing them to grasp the intended meaning without being overly preoccupied with the author’s individual writing style.